Throughout history there have been numerous saints who have been teachers or founded schools. However, there are three patrons who are most often invoked when it comes to Catholic schools in the United States.
1St. John Bosco
Catholic Schools Week always begins on the last Sunday of January, coinciding with the celebration of St. John Bosco’s feast day on January 31.
St. John Bosco was a highly influential teacher in the 19th century, and his Salesian Order became one of the largest teaching orders in the world.
2St. Elizabeth Ann Seton
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is widely considered the founder of the parochial school system in the United States.
Her religious order was founded as a teaching order, and they opened many schools in this country.
3St. John Neumann
Another key figure in the formation of Catholic schools in the United States, St. John Neumann was a bishop in Philadelphia who founded the first Catholic diocesan school system in the country.
After his death, many other bishops followed his example and began founding diocesan schools throughout the United States.